Delete file with NO owner
Posted on 2003-03-05
I currently have a webserver running WinNT Server and IIS 4.0 that provides faculty and staff access to an educational institution.
While attempting to get a web-based program to function, I inadvertantly created a file with no owner that nobody (not even the administrator account) can access or delete.
In order to demonstrate this, I have mapped a drive to the affected directory on the webserver and used DIR /Q to display the files and their owner. Notice that the "test2" directory has "..." listed as owner.
Volume in drive Z has no label.
Volume Serial Number is 9854-A623
Directory of Z:\survey
03/04/2003 08:53 AM <DIR> BUILTIN\Administrators .
03/04/2003 08:53 AM <DIR> BUILTIN\Administrators ..
03/03/2003 03:50 PM <DIR> ... test2
0 File(s) 0 bytes
3 Dir(s) 1,953,845,248 bytes free
How this happened:
In order to attempt to get an application to run, I granted MODIFY permissions to the Internet Guest Account (IUSR) on the webserver. The application limped along, and I decided I wanted to delete that test.
I happened to have MS Frontpage open, and attmpted to delete the parent folder ("survey") through that avenue, as I have many times before.
I want to emphasize that I have assigned permissions and deleted files before with no ill effects. However, this time it didn't go so smoothly, and I now have a file that I cannot access. Nobody has been able to delete it, take ownership, or even change (or display) permissions on the file. It is as though all ownership and rights to the file have been removed from the MFT but the file still remains.